Dialysis Patients and COVID 19: Should I get the Vaccine?, How to Prepare your Child for a Hospitalization, New Organ Transplant Guideline, and more!
By Keith A. Bellovich, DO and Mirjana Dimitrijevic, MD Parathyroidectomy is the surgical removal of one or more of your parathyroid glands. It stems from the Greek ektomia = "cutting out" which means to surgically remove something from your body. The parathyroid glands are made of tissue slightly larger than a single grain of rice, located around your Adam’s apple that produce parathyroid hormone (PTH) and control the levels of calcium in your body. PTH stimulates the conversion of calcidiol (25-hydroxyvitamin D) to calcitriol (activated vitamin D) within kidney tubular cells, which leads to the absorption of calcium in your diet [...]
By Michael Ramirez The worst day of my life became the best day of my life. ''Your kidneys are failing," my physician said to me. My first thought, "What does that mean?" My doctor confirmed, "You need to see a specialist." I learned that a nephrologist is a kidney doctor, and that was the type of specialist I needed. I trusted my doctor so I asked, "Who should I see? Who do you trust?" My doctor referred me to his choice of nephrologist—and so I made an appointment right away. If your doctor says you need to see a nephrologist, don’t [...]
By Harvey Mysel I’ve often been asked: “Where can I register to get a living donor?” Unlike deceased donation where there’s one national list, (although you can multi-list because some areas have a shorter wait time) there’s no such list for someone looking for a living donor. You must find your own living donor. When you do have someone that is able to be a living donor, many are not compatible with their recipient. Thirty to 50 percent of donor/recipient pairs are not compatible with each other. In such a situation the incompatible donor could still help the person in need [...]
By Elizabeth Anderson, LCSW, DSW and Dale Lupu, MPH, PhD When I was first told I had chronic kidney disease (CKD), I was grateful that there were lifesaving treatments, but I was also scared because I didn’t have a plan. I worried that I might be in pain or become a burden to my family. I felt better when I was able to discuss my desires and healthcare decisions with my family and healthcare team. What kind of medical care would you want if you were too ill to express your wishes? Like most people, you may not have thought about [...]
By Jewel Edwards-Ashman I started the year 2020 anticipating that I’d enter kidney failure and have to undergo my second kidney transplant. But I didn’t expect to start doing home dialysis and eventually have transplant surgery in the middle of a pandemic. Transplant surgery in ordinary circumstances comes with a high level of stress and anxiety. Having a kidney transplant during a public health crisis only exacerbated those feelings for me. To reduce my stress and manage my emotions, here are three things I did: I prioritized self-care. Most Americans, even those who aren’t living with chronic illness, have been experiencing [...]
By Collette Powers, MA, RDN, LDN, ACSM EP The year 2020 has proven to be a challenging year. Not only have many had to fight COVID-19 head-on, but millions have experienced the repercussions of the pandemic such as job loss, increased anxiety and stress, food insecurity, and social isolation to name a few. As our nation continues to fight this fight, we now have to consider and prepare for other illnesses commonly seen around this time of year such as upper respiratory infections (also known as the common cold), influenza (flu) and pneumonia. With fall here and winter around the [...]
“A Mindful Heart”: Stress Management Tools for Patients Living with Heart Disease and Chronic Kidney Disease
By Stacy Ogbeide, PsyD, ABPP, CSOWM DPC Education Center Advisory Council Member Stress Management—a topic those living with heart disease and chronic kidney disease have heard before but now in 2020, takes a whole new meaning. We are in the COVID-19 pandemic—unprecedented times—that are impacting people physically, financially, socially, spiritually, and emotionally. Maybe your healthcare has been disrupted; treatment disrupted; work, social, and family life disrupted. Your current stress management options are no longer working, or you don’t have access to your typical stress management options, which is beginning to take a toll on you. Don’t lose heart—I’d like to [...]
Medicare Advantage Now Open for Enrollment, "A Mindful Heart": Stress Management Tools for Patients Living with Heart Disease and Chronic Kidney Disease, Kidney Patients and Coronavirus: What Have We Learned? and more!
Between now and December 7, dialysis patients are, for the first time, able to choose a Medicare Advantage plan for their coverage. Medicare Advantage is an alternative to traditional Medicare run by private insurance companies. To help kidney patients explore their options, Dialysis Patient Citizens has established Dialysis Plan Choice, an online tool designed in collaboration with Consumers’ Checkbook for dialysis patients to quickly and easily compare their current Medicare Fee-For-Service plan with the options available to them through Medicare Advantage. DialysisPlanChoice.org helps patients and caregivers more easily understand what plans are available to them, the costs are associated with those plans, and, most importantly, which plans [...]